JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The Rapid Response Unit and Rural Water Limited have merged to provide better service to residents of rural Jamaica.
  • The State Minister pointed out that there are no concerns regarding the availability of trucks.
  • Rapid Response is now doing a business plan with Rural Water in ensuring that they can cover markets not serviced by the NWC.

The Rapid Response Unit and Rural Water Limited have merged to provide better service to residents of rural Jamaica, who are impacted by drought conditions.

This was disclosed to JIS News by Minister of State in the Ministry of Water, Land, Environment and Climate Change, Ian Hayles.

“The synergies that will now be developed will enhance the common goal, whether it is from a design standpoint from Rural Water or from a trucking standpoint from Rapid Response.  Both will be operating under the same entity, ensuring that we can streamline things and bring operations together in furthering the goal of providing water to Jamaicans,” he argued.

The State Minister pointed out that there are no concerns regarding the availability of trucks, as efforts were made to ensure that Rapid Response had enough to execute its main function of trucking water.

“We have 20 trucks in operation. Rapid Response is now doing a business plan with Rural Water in ensuring that the markets that the National Water Commission (NWC) cannot service, they can now do those things,” he told JIS News.

The Rapid Response Unit was established 1999 as an emergency facility to provide water on a temporary basis to communities affected by water supply problems, severe drought and other natural disasters. The unit was later disbanded in 2009.

Mr. Hayles said that a report from the Meteorological Service of Jamaica indicates that the parishes of Hanover, St. James, Westmoreland, St. Elizabeth and parts of Trelawny and St. Catherine are still being affected by drought conditions, brought on by the annual ‘dry period’ which stretches from January to the end of March.